TV review by
Ashley Moulton, Common Sense Media
Twirlywoos TV Poster Image
Charming humor and vocabulary learning for youngest kids.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Educational Value

Twirlywoos demonstrate early learning vocabulary words like "through, taller/smaller, on/off," though kids in the intended age range may not learn particularly well from television.

Positive Messages

Twirlywoos model curiosity and being inquisitive.

Positive Role Models

Twirlywoos model curiosity and exploration, but since they don't talk it's hard to know much about their inner worlds.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Twirlywoos is a playful show for very young kids that introduces early learning concepts like "high/low," "in/out," "wet/dry." The stop-motion animated Twirlywoos don't talk, much like the creator Anne Wood's other hit, Teletubbies, but the action is easy to follow. Twirlywoos has fun jokes that appeal to all ages, but is targeted at very young kids (who may be so young they don't learn particularly well from TV).

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What's the story?

The TWIRLYWOOS are an adorable family of tiny creatures named Great BigWho, Toodloo, Chickadee, Chick, and their "dog" Peekaboo. They live on a boat that comes ashore when they want to explore the land around them. In every episode, their twirly propeller heads help them fly to the live-action human world. They are very curious about and often perplexed by what humans are up to. Then, they return to their boat, and have silly fun with Peekaboo there. Their observations teach them about one vocabulary concept per show, and the words are early-learning concepts like "near," "outside," and "through." A narrator describes the scenes in simple language and emphasizes the featured vocabulary concept.

Is it any good?

Twirlywoos is a super cute and playful show that young children will enjoy. The adorable characters are stop-motion animated and visit some very entertaining people in the real world. They don't talk, but there are a ton of visual jokes and great sound effects that help tell the story (like the Mr. Noodle segments in Sesame's "Elmo's World"). The accompanying music is delightful and adds to the charm of these fantastical characters.

The show has an early literacy curriculum that may be only moderately effective. It features very early vocabulary concepts, with narrator Linda Bassett (Call the Midwife and many other BBC dramas) repeating the featured vocabulary word multiple times in different contexts. There's a bit of a mismatch though, as children learning these particular early vocabulary words are typically too young to learn from watching TV. Parents can take cues from Twirlywoos, however, and demonstrate the featured words in real life to help reinforce them. It's a great show for young kids on entertainment value alone though, so still a worthwhile watch even if kids don't learn much.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the word featured in each episode. Let's see what we can use to show that word (in, out, covered, outside, etc.) in our house.

  • What did you see on Twirlywoos today? What or where did they explore? Have you ever seen a similar thing or place in your own adventures?

TV details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love toddler TV

Themes & Topics

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